Dr Charity Brown


I graduated from the University of Leeds with a BSc (Hons) in Psychology before gaining my PhD from the University of Kent (2003), where I also undertook postdoctoral appointments including an ESRC Postdoctoral Fellowship. I joined the University of Leeds in 2005 as a Lecturer and became an Associate Professor in 2014.



  • Widening Participation Lead for the School of Psychology

Research interests

My broad research interest relates to the interaction between language and memory. For example, verbalising (e.g. describing or labelling) faces or objects can sometimes benefit or sometimes interfere with our ability to recognise or imagine those faces or objects later. Much of my research has investigated the mechanisms that underpin the influence of verbalisation on visual perception and memory.

My research has implications for forensic contexts and has previously received funding from the ESRC . Witnesses to and victims of serious crime are often asked by the police to describe an offender. This can be particularly important in the process of creating a facial composite (i.e., a visual likeness) of the offender, which if recognised by someone familiar with that person, may then provide the police with a valuable lead in their investigation.

Research questions I am currently interested in are: 

  • How can we best tap into our memories for faces to help a witness (or victim) of crime construct a facial composite of an offender.
  • How might language (such as emotional labels e.g., sad, fear, anger) or other contextual information (vocal utterances, body posture) shape our perceptions and memories of faces and their emotional expressions?



  • PhD Psychology
  • BSc (Hons) Psychology

Professional memberships

  • Chartered Member of the British Psychological Society
  • Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society
  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy

Student education

I act as a personal tutor supporting the academic, personal and professional development of groups of students as they progress through the degree programme. I contribute to teaching and assessment in the area of cognitive psychology, and supervise undergraduate projects in areas related to face perception and recognition. I am the School of Psychology's Widening Participation Lead. 

Research groups and institutes

  • Language and memory
<h4>Postgraduate research opportunities</h4> <p>We welcome enquiries from motivated and qualified applicants from all around the world who are interested in PhD study. Our <a href="https://phd.leeds.ac.uk">research opportunities</a> allow you to search for projects and scholarships.</p>